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Become A Marble Setter

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Working As A Marble Setter

  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Getting Information
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information
  • Repetitive

  • $39,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Marble Setter Do

Flooring installers and tile and marble setters lay and finish carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile.

Duties

Flooring installers and tile and marble setters typically do the following:

  • Remove existing flooring or wall covering
  • Clean and level the surface to be covered
  • Measure the area and cut flooring material to fit
  • Arrange flooring according to design plans
  • Place flooring, using adhesives, nails, or staples
  • Fill joints with filler compound and remove excess compound
  • Trim excess carpet or linoleum
  • Apply necessary finishes, such as sealants and stains

Nearly every building has a finished floor, and flooring installers and tile and marble setters lay the materials that improve the look and feel of homes, offices, restaurants, and other buildings. Although most of the materials installed by these workers cover only floors, some materials are also installed on walls and countertops or in showers.

A smooth, even base of mortar or plywood is required in order for floors and tile to be installed. The base may be installed by flooring installers and tile and marble setters or by other construction craftworkers. When remodeling, workers may need to remove the old flooring and smooth the surface.

Carpet installers lay lengths of carpet on new floors or over older flooring. They use special tools, including “knee kickers,” to position the carpet and power stretchers to pull the carpet snugly against walls. Carpet seams are joined with special heat-activated tape.

Carpet tile installers lay small, modular pieces of carpet that may be glued into place. Carpet tiles allow for easy replacement and design patterns that are not possible with standard carpet.

Floor sanders and finishers perform the final steps in hardwood floor installation. After carpenters install the hardwood floor, workers use power sanders to smooth it. They apply stains and sealants to preserve the wood.

Floor layers, except carpet, wood, and hard tiles, install a wide variety of resilient flooring materials. Linoleum installers lay the hard, washable floor material of the same name. The linoleum is cut to size and glued into place. Vinyl installers install plastic-based flooring that includes vinyl ester, vinyl sheeting, and luxury vinyl tile. Installers of laminate, manufactured wood, and wood tile floors are included in this category.

Tile and marble setters install ceramic and marble tile. Tile installers, sometimes called tile setters, cut and place tile. To cut tiles, workers use wet saws, tile scribes, or handheld tile cutters to create even edges. They use trowels of different sizes to spread mortar or a sticky paste, called mastic, evenly on the surface to be tiled. To minimize imperfections and keep rows even, they put spacers between tiles. Spacers keep tiles the same distance from each other until the mortar is dry. Tile finishers apply grout between tiles after the tiles are set, using a rubber trowel which is called a float. When the grout dries, they must wipe the tiles for a clean, finished look. Marble setters cut marble to a specified size with a wet saw. After fastening the stone, marble setters polish the marble to a high luster, using hand or power sanders.

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How To Become A Marble Setter

Although some flooring installers and tile and marble setters learn their trade through an apprenticeship, most learn on the job, sometimes starting as a helper.

Education

There are no specific education requirements for someone to become a flooring installer or tile and marble setter. A high school diploma or equivalent is preferred for those entering an apprenticeship program.

High school art, math, and vocational courses are considered helpful for flooring installers and tile and marble setters.

Training

Most contractors have their own training programs for flooring installers and tile and marble setters. New workers typically learn by working with experienced installers. Although workers may enter training directly, many start out as helpers. 

New workers usually start by performing simple tasks, such as moving materials. As they gain experience, they are given more complex tasks, such as cutting carpet. Some tile installer helpers become tile finishers before becoming tile installers.

Some flooring installers and tile and marble setters learn their trade through a 2- to 4-year apprenticeship. For each year of the program, apprentices must complete at least 144 hours of related technical training and 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job training. Some of these programs now include online training. Many new workers begin with 12 weeks of preapprenticeship instruction at a training center to learn construction basics. This instruction may include mathematics, building code requirements, safety and first-aid practices, and blueprint reading.

Several groups, including unions and contractor associations, sponsor apprenticeship programs. The basic qualifications for entering an apprenticeship program are as follows:

  • Minimum age of 18
  • High school education or equivalent
  • Physically able to perform the work

After completing an apprenticeship program, flooring installers and tile and marble setters are considered to be journey workers and may perform duties on their own. 

Some flooring manufacturers offer product-specific training for their products. In addition, some installers attend conferences that offer training sessions in various flooring materials.

Certification

The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) offers the Certified Tile Installer (CTI) certification for workers with 2 or more years of experience. Applicants are required to complete a written test and a hands-on performance evaluation.

Several groups, including the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation, the International Masonry Institute (IMI), the International Union of Bricklayers & Allied Craftworkers (IUBAC), the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), the Tile Contractors’ Association of America (TCAA), and the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) have created the Advanced Certifications for Tile Installers (ACT) program. Certification requirements include passing both an exam and a field test. Workers must also have either completed a qualified apprenticeship program or earned the CTI certification to qualify for testing. The program offers certifications in five specific areas of tile installation:

  • Large-format tile and substrate preparation
  • Membranes
  • Mortar (mud) floors
  • Mortar (mud) walls
  • Shower receptors

The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) has a voluntary certification for floor sanders and finishers. Sanders and finishers must have 2 years of experience and must have completed NWFA-approved training. Applicants are also required to complete written and performance tests.

The International Certified Floorcovering Installers Association (CFI) offers certification for flooring and tile installers. Installers need 2 years of experience before they can take the written test and a hands-on performance evaluation.

The International Standards & Training Alliance (INSTALL) offers a comprehensive flooring certification program for flooring and tile installers. INSTALL certification requires 4 years of classroom and hands-on training, and covers all major types of flooring.

Important Qualities

Color vision. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters often need to determine small color variations. Because tile patterns may include many different colors, workers must be able to distinguish among colors and among patterns for the best looking finish. 

Customer-service skills. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters commonly work in customers’ homes. Therefore, workers must be courteous and considerate of a customer’s property while completing tasks.

Detail oriented. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters need to plan and lay out materials. Some carpet patterns can be highly detailed and artistic, so workers must ensure that the patterns are properly and accurately aligned.

Math skills. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters use measurement-related math skills on every job. Besides measuring the area to be covered, workers must calculate the number of carpet tiles needed to cover that area.

Physical stamina. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters must have the endurance to stand or kneel for many hours. Workers need to spread adhesives quickly and place tile on floors before the adhesives harden.

Physical strength. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters need to lift and carry heavy materials. Workers must be strong enough to lift, carry, and set heavy pieces of marble into position.

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Marble Setter Typical Career Paths

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Average Length of Employment
Marble Mason 7.6 years
Marble Setter 6.0 years
Marble Installer 4.3 years
Tile Setter 4.0 years
Setter 2.1 years
Top Careers Before Marble Setter
Owner 7.0%
Journeyman 7.0%
Supervisor 7.0%
Foreman 7.0%
Stocker 4.7%
Greeter 4.7%
Cashier 4.7%
Volunteer 4.7%
Valet 4.7%
Planter 2.3%
Top Careers After Marble Setter
Tile Setter 10.4%
Owner 8.3%
Manager 8.3%
Technician 4.2%
Security 4.2%
Driver 4.2%
Guide 4.2%
Carpenter 4.2%
Installer 4.2%

Do you work as a Marble Setter?

Average Yearly Salary
$39,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$25,000
Min 10%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$60,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
DEE
Highest Paying City
Jersey City, NJ
Highest Paying State
New Jersey
Avg Experience Level
5.6 years
How much does a Marble Setter make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Marble Setter in the United States is $39,189 per year or $19 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $25,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $60,000.

Real Marble Setter Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Tile and Marble Setter Cornell's Quality Construction Inc. Kirkland, WA Mar 05, 2008 $87,654 -
$89,741
Tile and Marble Setters Sunset Design, Inc. NY Mar 26, 2009 $77,407
Tile and Marble Setters Wexford Custom Homes & Renovations, Inc. Summit, NJ Apr 29, 2009 $75,862
Tile and Marble Setters Wexford Custom Homes & Renovations, Inc. Summit, NJ Feb 11, 2010 $75,862
Tile & Marble Setter Trinity Contracting & General Maintenance Fairfield, NJ Jun 29, 2012 $74,006
Tile and Marble Setter G & L Plumbing Co. North Arlington, NJ Aug 22, 2008 $69,476
Marble Setter Imperial Marble and Granite Jersey City, NJ Jun 01, 2010 $69,476
Tile & Marble Setter G & L Plumbing Co. Inc. NJ Apr 22, 2009 $69,476
Tile and Marble Setters Gazivoda Realty Co., Inc. New York, NY Feb 22, 2013 $68,000
Tile and Marble Setters Tiles By Perfection Quincy, MA Feb 04, 2011 $67,579
Tile and Marble Setters Artistic Tile & Marble Contractor LLC Pearl River, NY Mar 19, 2014 $67,163
Tile and Marble Setter Powers Flooring, Inc. North Reading, MA Jan 09, 2008 $66,784
Tile & Marble Setter Belgian Block Sales Company, Inc. Old Bridge, NJ Apr 29, 2009 $66,221
Tile & Marble Setters Walter's Elite Creations, LLC Marlboro, NJ Mar 05, 2010 $66,221
Tile and Marble Setters Haricon Inc. Otisco, NY Apr 11, 2013 $50,359 -
$24
Tile and Marble Setter Hoferer Construction and Investments, Inc. San Clemente, CA May 16, 2008 $50,276
Tile and Marble Setters Pro Design, Inc. NY Oct 24, 2012 $50,190
Tile and Marble Setters Kastra Developement Corp. NY Sep 26, 2012 $50,190
Tile and Marble Setters Dominion Ceramic Tile, Inc. Lorton, VA Jan 17, 2014 $50,000
Tile and Marble Setters Stone Connection Los Angeles Inc. CA Mar 05, 2012 $49,816
Tile and Marble Setters Geo Construction, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Feb 09, 2011 $49,816
Tile and Marble Setters Northern Virginia Marble & Granite, LLC Springfield, VA Apr 20, 2009 $49,671
Tile and Marble Setters Tanner Materials Phoenix, AZ Nov 29, 2010 $36,992
Tile and Marble Setters Silva Tile Installation Inc. Port Saint Lucie, FL Aug 23, 2010 $36,836
Tile and Marble Setters Silva Tile Installation Inc. Port Saint Lucie, FL Mar 11, 2010 $36,836
Marble Setter Rheinschmidt Tile and Marble, Inc. LA Jul 23, 2012 $36,293
Tile and Marble Setters Craig Custom Construction, LLC Little Rock, AR May 18, 2012 $35,131
Tile and Marble Setters Leonard Capuano Irvington, NY Oct 29, 2009 $35,103
Marble Setter Prestige Store Company North Arlington, NJ Apr 13, 2010 $35,103
Tile & Marble Setter J. E. Q. Co. LLC D/B/A Stucco of The Hamptons Riverhead, NY Mar 07, 2008 $34,665

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Top 10 Best States for Marble Setters

  1. New Jersey
  2. New York
  3. California
  4. Hawaii
  5. Kansas
  6. Pennsylvania
  7. New Hampshire
  8. Minnesota
  9. Oregon
  10. Washington
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Marble Setter Demographics

Gender

Male

80.7%

Unknown

12.3%

Female

7.0%
Ethnicity

White

62.3%

Hispanic or Latino

17.8%

Black or African American

11.9%

Asian

4.3%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

100.0%

Marble Setter Education

Schools

Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania

5.0%

Hunter Business School

5.0%

Kankakee Community College

5.0%

Brigham Young University - Idaho

5.0%

Platt College-Riverside

5.0%

University of Hawaii Maui College

5.0%

Eastern Illinois University

5.0%

Huston-Tillotson University

5.0%

ECPI University

5.0%

Columbia Southern University

5.0%

City Colleges of Chicago-Richard J Daley College

5.0%

Waukesha County Technical College

5.0%

Dutchess Community College

5.0%

State University of New York Westchester Community College

5.0%

Community College of Denver

5.0%

Bradley University

5.0%

State University of New York Empire State College

5.0%

Universal Technical Institute

5.0%

Montgomery County Community College

5.0%

Minnesota School of Business

5.0%
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Majors

Business

25.9%

Computer Science

7.4%

Education

7.4%

Precision Metal Working

7.4%

Visual And Performing Arts

3.7%

Management

3.7%

Finance

3.7%

Environmental Science

3.7%

General Education, Specific Areas

3.7%

Public Health

3.7%

Computer Networking

3.7%

Computer Technical Support

3.7%

Computer Engineering

3.7%

Construction Management

3.7%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.7%

Electrical/Electronics Maintenance And Repair Technology

3.7%

Masonry

3.7%

Photography

3.7%
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Degrees

Other

48.1%

Associate

22.2%

Bachelors

18.5%

Masters

3.7%

Certificate

3.7%

Diploma

3.7%
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